A municipal court is a court with restrictive area of authority over criminal offenses and civil disputes inside its area. These courts can be found at the city or county tier.
Toppenish Municipal Court INformation
Court: Toppenish Municipal Court
Address: “Law & Justice Center 401 Homer Street, Sunnyside, WA 98944”
What is the purpose of the Toppenish Municipal Court?
Municipal Courts are often called “courts of limited jurisdiction.” Which means that they work with minor criminal charges, civil disputes, and traffic violations. Courthouses like Toppenish Municipal Court are the first level of court for this group of matters.
In other situations, the role of a county court is to deal with a large number of civil disputes within the respective region. Most cases involve family matters, accident cases, more serious criminal charges, or lawsuits.
County courthouses have the jurisdiction to deal with misdemeanors and civil matters that can not exceed the amount of $15k, while the circuits courts handle felony cases and bigger civil cases.
TYPES OF Legal Matters adjudicated IN A MUNICIPAL COURT in Sunnyside, Washington
Municipal courts are the entry level of courthouses in the United States. They are usually found within the jurisdiction where they are located, but some places share municipal courts with other municipalities.
This can be done to better service their citizens or to save money on expenditures. The cases that may be heard by a municipal court depend on the municipality, but typically include traffic tickets, criminal misdemeanors and code violations.
There is no set definition for what makes a misdemeanor charge versus a felony, but generally speaking felonies would require more time in jail than misdemeanor charges and fines may also be higher for felonies. Traffic violations usually result in points against your driver’s license as well
how are cases managed in the municipal court in Sunnyside?
Magistrates preside over hearings to determine:
- Probable cause for arrest
- Set bail amounts and conditions of release
- Conduct arraignment hearings when charges are filed against suspects by police officers
- Issue search warrants to law enforcement officers in order to protect evidence from crime locations
- Conduct preliminary examinations to learn if there is enough evidence to charge
The usual process of a Municipal Court matter
First Step: An Issuance of Summons
Step Two: Show Up before Judge or Magistrate
Municipal Court Penalties in Sunnyside, WA
Penalties change often, which is why it’s best to speak with licensed attorney. The information below represents common penalties, but may not be 100% accurate for the Toppenish Municipal Court.
A violation is an offense that carries a penalty of $500 or less, while a misdemeanor can have penalties up to $1,000.00 or one year in jail. A person’s driving privileges may be suspended for six months if they receive three speeding tickets within 12 months.
The penalties for different crimes in municipal courts vary depending on the severity of an crimes. For example, if you are caught with marijuana without having a medical prescription for it then you could be fined up to $2k or spend up to six months in jail.
Toppenish Municipal Court Records
Municipal Court records from a municipal government could be difficult to find because they are not always stored in one area or system. The records that an individual might need to depend on the type of matter they have before the court, where it’s at in the process, and what kind of of information is needed by law to be available.
Common Questions ABOUT the Toppenish Municipal Court
What is municipal court in Sunnyside, Washington?
In Washington, the municipal court is a lower level with civil and criminal jurisdiction within a city or municipality. Municipal courts have a small jurisdiction and have limited authority as well, dealing only with petty charges and misdemeanor crimes.
What does the municipal court handle in Sunnyside, Washington?
Depending on the scope of the municipality, a municipal court can handle a civil division (cases with less than $15,000 at issue), a traffic/criminal division, or a housing and environmental division. More serious cases/crimes are handled by higher authorities.
How many judges does the Toppenish Municipal Court have?
The number of judges depends on the municipality’s population.
How are cases heard in municipal courts in Washington?
A municipal courthouse judge may be either elected or appointed to serve for a set term of years or until retirement. Judges are commonly chosen by precincts with each precinct’s results judged according to the number of people. Municipal magistrates are often not attorneys but have some legal training and must complete multiple hours of ongoing material every period to maintain their licenses.